ICIS has extensive coverage of the Polypropylene markets and our network of locally-based experts deliver reliable and trustworthy pricing information on a weekly basis. Price reports are published from Africa, Asia, southeast Asia, Middle East, China, CIS, Europe, Turkey, US and Latin America.
There are also weekly margin reports in Asia, China, Europe and the US assessing a short-term three-month view and longer-range view. Forecast reports looking forward a year and 12-month rolling series reports are also compiled for Asia, Europe and the US. This high-value news and analysis is an essential business tool to assist market players when making crucial decisions.
Our editor gives their expert view
Polypropylene overview Transcript
Polypropylene or PP is a thermoplastic material that is mainly sold in resin pellets to processors who then shape it into a wide variety of products including car bumpers, oil containment booms and medicine caps.
US polypropylene has major end markets in automotive manufacturing and rigid packaging.
Some lower margin applications such as film and carpet have been largely outsourced from the US.
Most domestic contracts are linked to monomer benchmarks, so propylene market fluctuations are the main drivers of polypropylene contract prices.
In the recent years it has become more common for propylene shortages to cause rapid fluctuations in pricing for polypropylene and its feedstock.
The US polypropylene industry used to serve as a dependable export supplier to the world, but with the relatively high cost structure of feedstock, North America has become a more regional market.
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Polypropylene news and market information products from ICIS
We offer the following regional Polypropylene analysis and news coverage to keep you informed of factors and developments affecting prices in the Polypropylene marketplace.
Price Reporting – More information about the price reports we publish on Polypropylene
Independent price assessments and market coverage by region
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Other types of reports we cover for Polypropylene
Use margin reports to assess the profitability of commodities
News & analysis
News & Analysis - News & market analysis specifically relating to Polypropylene
Breaking news of latest developments affecting the markets.
Insight and analysis of factors driving prices.
Polypropylene: Market overview
Updated to Q3 2016
Polypropylene (PP) demand in China and southeast Asia is expected to be strong, as buyers restock on low inventories. Supply from Chinese and ASEAN producers is expected to be limited due to plant maintenances or shutdowns in the third quarter, prompting buyers to seek import cargoes. Sentiment is generally bullish on firm propylene and crude oil and there is little inventory pressure.
PP demand is projected to improve in most Latin American countries because of seasonality. Prices are expected to be under pressure during the first part of the third quarter because of loose supply, but will stabilise by the end. US PP utilisation rates and inventory levels are high and prices are expected to fall in July. Output could be cut in summer on expected lower demand.
The Turkish PP market may revive after Ramadan in an attempt to align prices with Asia. Overall demand levels remains poor, however.
Prices in the Middle East continue to have a pessimistic outlook in the near term. Demand in the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) region is likely to remain low because of the summer. This is likely to limit any upward movement in the targeted prices among regional producers, despite limited stocks.
European producers’ PP margins are strong and while some erosion has taken place in 2016, they are expected to hold on to good profitability. Propylene is in tight supply and imports into Europe are expected to dwindle as European PP prices remain low in global terms. Most sources expect producers’ high profitability to remain into the third quarter.
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Polypropylene Asia Margin Report Methodology
Polypropylene China Margin Report Methodology
Polypropylene Europe Margin Report Methodology
Polypropylene Europe price forecast methodology
Polypropylene US Margin Report methodology
Polypropylene US price forecast methodology
Polypropylene (PP) is a colourless, translucent to transparent solid with a glossy surface. It has good resistance to acids, alkalis, inorganic chemicals and organic chemicals with the exception of hydrocarbons and chlorinated compounds.
It has improved impact strength, a higher softening point, lower density, better stress cracking and more scratch resistance than other polyolefins. However, a disadvantage of this polymer is its brittleness at low temperatures.
Polypropylene was first produced in a slurry process using Ziegler-Natta catalysts. Bulk phase technologies were then developed while higher activity catalysts enabled gas phase processes to be used. A combination of bulk phase tubular and gas phase reactors has become a popular process.
PP has key applications in packaging, fibres and automotive parts. PP can be extruded for pipe, conduit, wire and cable, while atactic PP has outlets in paper laminating, sealants and adhesives.